4 critical observations from Carolina Panthers 2023 training camp Day 7

The Carolina Panthers got back down to business after another day off following Fan Fest,
Bryce Young
Bryce Young / Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports
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What were some critical observations from the seventh official practice at Carolina Panthers training camp heading into the 2023 season?

After a hugely successful Fan Fest that saw almost 40,000 descend on Bank of America Stadium to see the new regime strut their stuff, the Carolina Panthers returned from a day off for practice No. 7 of training camp. Things are getting more intense with every passing session, which will grow further next week as the New York Jets come to Wofford College in Spartanburg for joint practices.

Everything seems to be going according to plan so far. There have been a few slight injury worries, but nothing to overly concern Frank Reich and his coaching staff as they look to hit the ground running in Week 1 against the Atlanta Falcons.

As expected, there was plenty to unpack from Friday's session. With that being said, here are four critical observations from camp practice in the stifling South Carolina humidity.

Carolina Panthers OLB Eku Leota continues to impress

There seems to be some real momentum building around Eku Leota. The undrafted free agent is taking advantage of every rep coming his way - albeit with the second and third-string units - generating havoc at will and making life extremely difficult for opposing offensive linemen.

Leota is rapidly emerging into a dark horse contender to make the Carolina Panthers' 53-man roster in 2023. Stacking him up against elite-caliber performers such as Taylor Moton and Ikem Ekwonu would be wise, as would getting as many preseason reps into the former Auburn star as possible before final evaluation discussions begin.

For now, it's so far, so good.